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The Inside Story of India’s $50 Computer Tablet

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Games: Stardew Valley, Overland and Wasteland 3

  • Stardew Valley is getting a nifty whole-farm screenshot feature in an upcoming update

    The developer of the sweet game Stardew Valley, ConcernedApe, has announced that a feature-filled update is coming. Coming with the update is a big variety of new things. Their main aim with it, they said is to "polish" the game more. So they're going through fixing various issues that have been hanging around and add a lot of quality of life features. They don't go into too much detail though as they said they don't want to spoil it all, but it sounds like a massive update. One thing they did say is that Wild Bait, as an example, used to be "essentially worthless" but now gives you a chance to catch double fish. Also, every spouse option now has a unique 14-heart event after marriage.

  • The latest Overland update should address some inventory management nuisances

    While I appreciated Overland as difficult as it is, certain parts of it did need improvements and this new update aims to address some of the pain points. First up, a refresher course: what is Overland? It's a tough turn-based survival game, where you take care of a group of travellers on a post-apocalyptic road-trip across the United States.

  • inXile's big party-based RPG 'Wasteland 3' launching May 19 next year, now up for pre-order

    Wasteland 3, the big new squad-based role-playing game from inXile entertainment has a new trailer plus a release date. Today, they confirmed May 19 next year for Linux, macOS and Windows. Moving away from the scorching deserts of post-apocalypse Arizona to the frosty mountains of Colorado, you've been promised aid to keep your own home alive if you help the self-proclaimed Patriarch of Colorado rescue it from the ambitions of their bloodthirsty children. inXile are promising it will be full of challenging tactical combat, exploration, a deep story full of twists and ethical decision making.

Android Leftovers

PyRadio: An open source alternative for internet radio

PyRadio is a convenient, open source, command-line application for playing any radio station that has a streaming link. And in 2019, almost every radio station (certainly, every one that has a web presence) has a way to listen online. Using the free PyRadio program, you can add, edit, play and switch between your own selected list of streaming radio stations. It is a command-line tool for Linux that can run on many computers, including Macintosh and tiny computers like Raspberry Pi. To some, a command-line client for playing music might sound needlessly complicated, but it's actually a simple alternative and one that serves as an instant text-based dashboard to easily select music to listen to. A little background about myself: I spend a lot of time browsing for and listening to new music on Bandcamp, on various blogs, and even Spotify. I don't spend time casually listening to app *radio* stations, which are really algorithmically-generated continuous streams of similarly tagged music. Rather, I prefer listening to non-profit, college and locally-produced independent radio stations that are run by a community and don't rely on advertisements to sustain themselves. Read more

Security things in Linux v5.3

In the continuing work to remove “uninitialized” variables from the kernel, Alexander Potapenko added new “init_on_alloc” and “init_on_free” boot parameters (with associated Kconfig defaults) to perform zeroing of heap memory either at allocation time (i.e. all kmalloc()s effectively become kzalloc()s), at free time (i.e. all kfree()s effectively become kzfree()s), or both. The performance impact of the former under most workloads appears to be under 1%, if it’s measurable at all. The “init_on_free” option, however, is more costly but adds the benefit of reducing the lifetime of heap contents after they have been freed (which might be useful for some use-after-free attacks or side-channel attacks). Everyone should enable CONFIG_INIT_ON_ALLOC_DEFAULT_ON=1 (or boot with “init_on_alloc=1“), and the more paranoid system builders should add CONFIG_INIT_ON_FREE_DEFAULT_ON=1 (or “init_on_free=1” at boot). As workloads are found that cause performance concerns, tweaks to the initialization coverage can be added. Read more